What was the Standard of Living Debate?

The standard of living is a very controversial and discussed topic. Scholars throughout history have debated this topic on numerous sides; such as the side of the standard of living in other countries compared to one another, or the side of comparing the standard of living from each decade or century. What was the standard of living debate?

The standard of living debate was the debate between scholars on the topic of: did the industrial revolution improve the economic situation or make it worse. Industrialization brought much more jobs and more options for jobs. These new jobs of course had long hours and were very difficult and hard on the employees physically. But people have always done heavy manual labor, even before the Industrial Revolution. People before the Industrial Revolution did heavy farm labor, which was just as hard or even harder than the industrial jobs people now had. 

Another important question that came into play in this debate of standard of living, is the question of child labor. Child labor has always existed; it had existed long before the Industrial. Children had to do heavy manual labor on their family’s farm, way before the Industrial Revolution began. Now, these scholars on the majority agree that the Industrial Revolution improved living conditions because it brought forth more opportunities to a wider range of people. Thus, this was the standard of living debate. 

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